Thursday, May 27, 2010

Old Days

I remember when I discovered hotdogs. Later, I found out they had special buns to put them on. Sometime later, I found out there were places where people cooked for you and they were not called Mama. They wanted money for the food then they wanted you to leave money on the table. What's with that? Well, we think different these days. I can tell by looking at the world that we think different. It's messed up. Duh! or Dah! or Whatever!

How'd we get here? I whipped my children and made them go to school. I'm still paying for children to go to school. Other people didn't whip their children and they are proud to be modern parents. They write their children every week in C/O some government institute or rehab center. So those children's children are wandering the streets eating pizza and getting fat.

That was gloomy. All children didn't go that way. Fact is the generation we raised is raising children with a new and modern style. Television is the babysitter and fast food is the homecooked meal they will remember. Teachers are smarter than their Mama and Daddy, so there is a continuous conflict of morals. Or maybe not.

The economy drives us these days. Once a year for a week or two is all the quality time families have together. It was the economy in the old days too. Parents and children worked side-by-side and had lots of time together. They sweated together, ate together and piled up in the old farm house to get some sleep before time to milk the cows.

I hate to say it but sometimes we had to kick the dog out of the trail. Sometimes a whack at a chicken was necessary to get it off the porch. You know, normal stuff like that.

Thing about those days, we were together in the same place a lot. The blisters on our hands didn't matter much. Mama would plaster them with something. Clothes for Christmas were a blessing and we actually smiled when we got them. Nowadays, some children will pitch a big one if they open that box and it ain't no game of some kind or a whatchamacallit.

Some things about these modern days are okay. Indoor plumbing is nice. That outhouse could get cold in the winter and stinky in the summer. Electric stoves are great. There is no need to cut wood until dark to feed a wood burner. We called them wood stoves. (Of course, if they had been wood stoves, they would have burned up.) Just have to take care of that bill every month. Wouldn't a bill back then. But back then, we had some woods we could prune for fire wood. Create smoke these days and you got to explain yourself to the fire department.

I'm telling you, back then if I wanted to shoot a squirrel, I did it. Ate it too. I didn't shoot all of them. I got some in my yard now, feed them everyday with the edges off my toast. I don't shot squirrels anymore. I don't shoot anyone I know. Not yet.

I even punched a cow once for slapping me with her tale while I was milking. She stepped in the milk bucket so I never punched her again. I don't milk cows anymore, just take the little strip off the lid of the milk jug. About that little strip, somebody knows how to torment old people!
We didn't have strips on milk jugs, just had to scoop the cream off the top and go at it. Rich stuff. It would stand you up and make you want to go load some hay.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The World is Leaking

Back before the leak, I saw several news stories about the way the oil companies drill now. They sink a well and then drill sideways in several directions. It saves having to sink several wells. Well that was good for getting out more oil but now that they got a hole they can't stop up, there is a lot more oil to leak out. Yes, the world is leaking.

I think about the warnings that we have had to 'get off the can' and switch to something besides oil. Then the prices go down and we all make a national sigh of relief and 'tally ho" down the road. We got gas again.

Now we have another indication that we should switch to something cleaner to run our machines. I've always been suspicious that sucking all that oil out of the ground was causing earthquakes. It's got to be making big empty spaces down there. I know about the plates sliding around but could it be that the empty spaces are helping them along.

Maybe the dinosaurs would like to rest in peace instead of being piped, shipped and trucked all over the world to be burned in engines, blown out tailpipes and shot into the atmosphere; only to be breathed by humans, then radiated when it causes cancer, etc....... Don't they deserve some rest.

Oh, you mean oil doesn't come from dead dinosaurs, well the trees then. Maybe they don't want to be dug up, shipped, piped and trucked all over the world......

Oh, not trees either.... Well what ever it is.

One thing we have found out during this mess is that oil companies are not as smart as we thought and the government is even less so. How many organizations does it take to plug a hole in the bottom of the gulf, we will just have to wait and see. What we need instead of oil tankers is oil submarines that could just go down there and let the oil pour in. You know like jets refueling in the air, sort of...

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The Supreme Court

It is a false assumption, that we have, that when we elect a president or a congressman that things will finally be fixed. Abortion comes to mind. We vote for candidates to try and get the killing of the unborn stopped. That is not the only issue that conservatives work for but it is a big one. When you read history, those nations that killed the innocent did not endure the test of time. Judgment day came. So it is not just protecting the unborn that is at stake, but the preservation of the nation. Of course, many of those who condone this hideous act do not honor God in the first place and so do not understand that besides being a God of love and mercy, he is also a God of justice and historically has championed the cause of the innocent and the helpless.

So, what does that have to do with the Supreme Court? The Supreme Court has taken on more authority than, what I believe, the Constitution allows. They not only decide disputes about the Constitution but have in essence made new laws and added new meaning to the Constitution by injecting what they think the words meant. They say such things as 'that is what it says but this is what it meant' thus making new guidelines. That is how abortion came to be the law of the land. It did not come from the lawmakers in congress which is where laws should come from or from the president who can send bills to congress to be made into law. It came from the Supreme Court where they are suppose to decide matters of laws already in force, not make new ones. Read the history concerning abortion. You will find a new term which refers to the area around a shadow i.e. the eclipse of the sun, where the Constitution supposedly meant such and such.

Each president strives to put justices on the bench because he knows that important decisions will come from there and that, with the lifetime appointments, the opinions of a justice will continue for a long time. Congress and the president can make all the laws they want but the Supreme Court can throw them out if they do not like them.

The three branches were a good idea when the Constitution was written. If all three branches stayed in their place, there would be a balance of power in Washington DC. The actions of the Supreme Court have thrown this balance off.

I believe that if the Supreme Court is going to take the role (as they have) of shaping policy and interpreting the law and the Constitution in ways that have no resemblance to the original intent that they should be an elected body so that they represent the entire country and not just a segment of it. The lifetime appointment should be repealed with an amendment to the Constitution. It is not us that would be making it a political body, they have already made themselves a political body by yielding to public opinion instead of judging whether a matter is within the bounds of existing laws.

The difficult part of doing such a thing as the previous paragraph suggest is that the Supreme Court is so powerful that they could declare the amendment unconstitutional and continue to act as they do. No one should be so powerful in a society that proposes to be of the people and by the people.

Four of the Supreme Court 'justices' will be from New York if the latest one is approved. What's with that?

Monday, May 10, 2010

Mother's Day

We have many holidays. Some holidays are celebrated with lots of fanfare, others are noticed (or not) as they pass by. Christmas celebrates the Lord Jesus and stands out like a bright star in the night. The Fourth of July represents our freedom and the battles fought for it. It is a proud day. Thanksgiving causes us to pause to be thankful and remind us not to take what we have for granted.

But there is this day we call Mother's Day. It gives us a special opportunity to give an extra hug, a flower or card to a most deserving person. From my point of view, as a son, motherhood is not about perfection. I think of it as being caring. The word steady comes to mind. When all the world is in upheaval, a child can go to his or her Mom and they will most likely be standing in the kitchen where they are working on something good to eat or cleaning up our mess. They are ready to bend or stretch (depending on the age of the child) for a hug, a kiss or a pat on the head or shoulder.

There are not always words of wisdom or solutions to every problem but she is there or her memory and we know that in our wobbly world, there is at least one straight line we can have to guide us.

I can see it only from my side. I cannot see the breaking heart she carries. I cannot see the urge to fly across the distance when she must stay where she is. I cannot see the aching bones when she doctors a splinter or bump. I cannot see the tiredness when she says those magic words "Do you want anything?" She is steady and she is ready to do the things she does that make us forever grateful for her love.

(Leeuna left me a nice comment but the program will not let me approve it. She said it was a nice tribute to mothers. Thanks Leeuna.)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Collection and Credit Companies

Thankfully, I do not have problems with collection companies and I guess my credit score is okay. I don't really care so long as people leave me alone. I seldom borrow money and hope to never do so again. That's my disclaimer.

I consider these types of companies the buzzards of society. They have no right to gather personal information and pass it out to people who pay them money. Oh! I know we are so use to them being around that we accept them as part of our life like the IRS and the road blocks to check our papers. The thing is they have no right.

I can vaguely remember when a banker would check a few references i.e. work, some places where you did some credit and a couple of friends. From that information, he would decide if he wanted to loan you a few hundred to buy a cow or some chickens or to build a smokehouse.

Then along came these people who skimmed information from anyplace they could get it. Gradually, bankers and such started calling them because they had the 'dope' on everyone. They were the gatherers of gossip. You could walk uprightly in your community but if someone reported something to these collectors whether it was true or not, you were turned down for a loan and they could not tell you why. You have to go check with the gossip collectors.

As time moved on, the government gave these people protection under the law. They can harass anyone within certain guidelines. They can threaten with discretion.

Now, it is all tied together. The gossip gatherers report to the credit bureaus and everyone is given a number. They call it a score. We are all boiled down to two numbers our social security number and our credit score. It takes a very determined person to figure out all the elements that go into the gathering and formulation of these scores. Add to that that the scores can change daily with a little thing like someone checking your score whither you know it or not.

I do not understand all of it. In fact, for years I thought I was a criminal and did not know why. I would apply for a loan, be turned down and never told why. Finally, I checked with the credit bureau and they explained that it was not that I had bad credit but that I had no credit. Dah!
In other words, I had been paying my bills upfront and therefore had no credit (pay on time) built up. Dah!

With every business, there is always a segment that disregards the law, changes their number and location often and never ever gives out their last name. Their first name is probably made up too. They call and threaten people with jail and dishonor if they do not send the money they say you owe. I know people who have gotten these calls for something they never dreamed of purchasing or charging. These people get complaint after complaint reported against them but law enforcement seems to do nothing. These people are hard to nail down. They are like the old street enforcers who would offer protection for a price and if the store owner did not accept the protection their property would be damaged and probably their person.

I'm pretty sick of the government not cleaning up the scum when they are given details of their activities. I got off on this subject when I happened onto a website where innocent people were being harassed by unscrupulous companies. I can get mad when other people hurt. I reckon.

I just do not like those people who are making a killing off the hard times citizens are going through these days, not because these citizens did something wrong but because greed has caused a financial upheaval in the world starting on Wall Street.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Is it Just Me or Is the World Nuts

I can feel all the fingers pointing at me or in my general direction. I asked 'Is it just me or is the World Nuts?'. In case you missed the title.

I was thinking about going to the drug store (pharmacy) the other day. The music was so loud, on something I never listen to and that makes my nerves all jumpy, that my wife and I could not even discuss what to get our parents for Mother's day. I mentioned it to the lady at the counter where we spent our hundred dollars but she just gave back a blank stare. I could imagine what she was thinking 'Bless their hearts, they are getting old. They don't know that guy singing is on all the TV shows and Oprah and Rock whop-a-da-doo.' Maybe she was nice and just didn't know how to address our honesty. Anyway, I think the music should reflect the wishes or at least the comfort of the customer who is paying all the salaries there and not for the enjoyment of the workers.

Someone is trying to bomb New York again, Man! don't they ever get tired. Times Square is already at sea level, what-they-goin'-do. The only thing they would wipe out are a bunch of opinions that no one cares about except those stating them.

The gulf is as slick as ... well it's slick. That is absolutely the ugliest oil I ever saw. It looks like something out of a motor with a blown head gasket. I hope they trap the stuff before it kills all the oysters. I know it would hurt the economy in an area where they are still not over Katrina. Maybe they ought not party so much and go to church once in a while. I'm just saying...

We went to the grocery store on Saturday afternoon last week because it was the only time we had to do it. That was a mistake. There was an entirely different crowd there. They had no tolerance for a couple of slow moving frugal shoppers, one of which was pretty much using the buggy as a walker. Reach and grab, make an ugly face, walk in front, no 'excuse me', ... the usual crowd you would see on the freeway during rush hour. The same ones who ride your bumper even if you are 5 over the speed limit then pass on the yellow line and slam on their brakes to turn off without giving a signal. I think those people are manufactured someplace and sent here. Not even a buzzard would hatch something with so little regard for others. If anyone reading this is part of this crowd, I am so sorry. Maybe you can't help it.

Talk about noise pollution. Loud radios, boom boxes they call them, I don't get it. Why is it so important for everyone to hear their music? Is there a message in the boom-boom that I am suppose to get. Those trucks using the jack-brakes that are pretty much banned around here. They vibrate the whole house at times in the night when the only sounds should be the train in the distance, the bathroom flushing or some burglar who is dumb enough to think I got money. Why do so many people ride dirt-bikes on the paved road near our house. What is it about 'dirt' that they don't understand?

I went out the other day and a bird was hollering "pretty, pretty, pretty". Yeah right, weirdo!

Well, have a good day and keep smiling. You're up to something, ain't you?